San Francisco, CA

Tax-Exempt Status:



“Social Impact Investment” Private Foundation



President & CEO:

Margaret Laws

Budget (2022):

Revenue: $11,202,444
Expenses: $12,260,881
Net Assets: $27,842,333 1


  1. Hopelab Foundation, Return from a Private Foundation (990) Part I, 2022.

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Hopelab is a “social impact investment” private foundation that was founded by Pam Omidyar, the wife of eBay founder Pierre Omidyar, and is affiliated with the Omidyar nexus of left-of center nonprofits. The organization is focused on youth health and has left-of-center conceptions of intersectionality and equity ingrained in its grant-making and investments. These programs include promoting gender affirmation in minors. 1 2 3

Founding and History

Hopelab was founded in 2002 by Pam Omidyar, the wife of eBay founder Pierre Omidyar. The organization’s first project was the development of a video game called “Re-Mission” that educates child-cancer patients about their illness and teaches them the importance of correctly following directions to take medicine and having proper nutrition and the like. 4

Hopelab has since branched out into numerous other projects related to youth and young adult physical and mental health. Some of these projects take the form of investment in for-profit companies, while others involve collaboration and funding with nonprofit organizations. 5


For the calendar year 2022, Hopelab reported $11,202,444 in revenue, of which $11,427,075 was derived from contributions and grants and $137,337 was derived from investment income. Revenue was less than contributions due to a net loss of $361,968 from the sale of assets. The foundation reported $12,260,881 in expenses, of which $950,666 was spent on executive compensation, $3,547,201 was spent on other employee salaries and compensation, and an additional $903,293 was spent on pension plans and employee benefits. Altogether operating and administrative expenses amounted to $11,340,666 with only $920,215 being paid out in contributions and grants. The foundation ended the year with $27,842,333 in net assets. 6

Hopelab qualifies its expenses differently under its tax filing’s summary of direct charitable activities, stating that it had expenses of $3,428,740 for advisory services related to the development of mental health products and services, $3,111,190 in grantmaking to fund scientific research, $1,711,210 in social impact investing, and $1,289,902 in programmatic activities related to mental health. 7

Regarding employee expenses, the group’s president, Margaret Laws, is paid over $600,000 in salary and benefits. An additional six employees receive over $200,000 in compensation, and five consulting firms received between $150,000 to over $500,000 in compensation. 8

Organization Philosophy and Programs

Hopelab is firmly rooted in left-of-center views regarding race, sexuality, and identity. It openly states that it seeks to advance “equity” with a special emphasis on LGBT issues and “BIPOC” (Black, indigenous, people of color). It solicits partnerships that, among other things, seeks to promote “identity affirmation.” 9

This identity affirmation includes the creation of the IMI app that is designed to affirm the sexual identities of children. 10

Hopelab has also launched an experimental project focused on youth mental health and environmental anxiety. The group notes that there is a high degree of anxiety around climate change among young people and burnout among young activists who engage in climate-related activism. The project is seeking to both alleviate this anxiety while simultaneously utilizing technology to facilitate even more youth activism on the issue. 11


Margaret Lewis is the president of Hopelab. She previously worked at the California HealthCare Foundation and established a fund to invest in health care service and technology companies that will potential lower costs and improve access. 12

Pamela Omidyar is the founder of Hopelab and a member of the board. She and her husband, Ebay founder Pierre Omidyar, founded and run the Omiydar Network that funds numerous left-of-center causes. 13


  1. “About.” Hopelab. Accessed January 26, 2024.
  2. “History.” Hopelab. Accessed January 29, 2024.
  3. “Hopelab Imi.” Hopelab. Accessed January 26, 2024.
  4. “History.” Hopelab. Accessed January 29, 2024.
  5. “About.” Hopelab. Accessed January 26, 2024.
  6. Hopelab Foundation, Return from a Private Foundation (990) Part I, 2022.
  7. Hopelab Foundation, Return from a Private Foundation (990) Part VIII, 2022.
  8. Hopelab Foundation, Return from a Private Foundation (990) Part VII, 2022.
  9.  “About.” Hopelab. Accessed January 26, 2024.
  10.  “Hopelab Imi.” Hopelab. Accessed January 26, 2024.
  11. “The Role Technology Plays in Climate Justice.” Hopelab. Accessed January 26, 2024.
  12. “Margaret Laws | Hopelab.” Hopelab. Accessed January 29, 2024.
  13. “Pam Omidyar.” Omidyar Network. Accessed January 29, 2024.
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